Obama Admin. Boosts Fuel Economy Standard

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The average car fuel economy will nearly double by 2025 to almost 55 miles per gallon, President Obama announced July 29 in a White House gathering that included both auto company executives and UAW representatives.

The President said that higher fuel efficiency standards is part of his energy policy which aims to decrease dependence on oil, to help Americans save money on gas, and to reduce pollution caused by auto emissions.

The rise in fuel efficiency standards will mean big savings at the pump, the President said. "Think about what this means. It means that filling up your car every two weeks instead of filling it up every week. It will save a typical family more than $8,000 in fuel costs over time."

In the subsequent 15 years after implementation, oil usage will be reduced by more than 2 million barrels per day and oil imports will decline by one-third.

Less oil usage "means we’re reducing the carbon pollution that threatens our climate," he added.

President Obama explained that his goal is to combine reduced oil consumption with new incentives for renewable energy sources and an end to tax subsidies for oil companies.

In separate remarks, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson said, “American consumers are calling for cleaner cars that won’t pollute their air or break their budgets at the gas pump, and our innovative American automakers are responding with plans for some of the most fuel efficient vehicles in our history.”

The administration's announcement won praise from environmental groups, despite the fact that they favored an average fuel economy standard of 60 mpg.

“After decades of inaction and stagnation," said Michael Brune, Sierra Club executive director, "President Obama has ensured 15 years of continuous progress to help cut our dangerous addiction to oil, create American jobs, save families money at the pump, curb life-threatening pollution and tackle climate disruption."

"Today's announcement is a win for everyone," he said.

Brune warned, however, that the administration should avoid creating loopholes or exceptions that weaken the standard as it is finalized this fall.

Michelle Robinson, director of the Union of Concerned Scientists' clean vehicles program, also applauded the announcement but added a caveat. "If automakers can meet the standards with accounting tricks instead of using better technology, the program’s overall benefits would be eroded," she said.

Photo by David Reber's Hammer Photography/cc by 2.0/Flickr

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    Posted by Margrett07, 10/29/2012 7:42pm (5 years ago)

  • The most important factor that make Americans adopt this new standard is that they can save more money. Money is probably one of the bigger sources of motivation for people to switch to a greener alternative. There were voices of opposition against this new standard, but I believe that in the long run, it will be for the better.

    Posted by Thomas, 09/17/2012 11:17pm (5 years ago)

  • My friend's Volkswagen diseal car was getting that economy 10 years ago. Even China, at least nominally, has that law on the books.

    Posted by nampa1, 09/25/2011 12:07pm (6 years ago)

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